The snowball effect for finances what's the success rate?
Focus on the smallest amount of debt and pay it off quickly and move on to the next debt.
It worked very well for me, and the "snowball plan" I'd figured out for my mom also worked well while it lasted, but with a slight change from what you've described. Basically, I figured out the minimum payments for all debt, then picked one that would be paid off first -- for that one, I had to pay no less than the minimum payment +20% every month. If I had more, I paid more. Once that one got paid off, the ENTIRE amount I'd paid to that debt every month would then be dedicated to the next I needed to pay off -- that debt then got its minimum payment + what had previously been the minimum payment of the paid-off debt + 20% of that previous minimum payment. When the second debt is paid, the entire amount I had previously been paying on both debts plus that 20% then rolls to the next in the priority line.
As to which one I picked first -- I didn't do the smallest. Instead, I picked the smallest one with the highest interest rate. For instance, if I have two debts at 10% and two at 12%, the lowest amount in the 12% is the first to get paid off even if it's more than the balance on the 10% ones. Saving money on that interest ends up being worth a heck of a lot more than a faster payoff.
It worked VERY well for me, but I stuck to it until it was all gone. My mom tried a similar plan for her own debt, and got about 70% of it paid off before she "fell of the wagon" and started spending money she didn't have again.
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